You know the kind of people that basically want us to put a sock in it and not create a stir with our words and ideas? Well, when it comes to exchanging ideas openly and freely I am not one of them. When it comes to your beliefs, insofar as they are not a recipe for violence and abuse I will labor to protect your right to think whatever the hell you want to!
There is nothing more tyrannical in my mind than for people to legislate the beliefs and words of others if said words and beliefs do not lead to mental and physical trauma. So as you can see I am attempting to distinguish between peacefully held opinions and what leads to terror and unjustified violence.
I am happy to say that many modern forms of religion are peaceful. I’m not really worried about the vast majority of people who identify as being Christian in America. Indeed, many of these people adhere to such beliefs because they feel strongly that at its core it is both loving and peaceful. That’s great! I am happy to have such neighbors and people to work with in my community.
My qualm about religion derives primarily from the sacred texts themselves as well as with how to think most logically about our origins. So with all of that said, I will fight for people’s right to believe and practice religion even though I personally do not identify as being religious. I want to live in a world that freely and peaceably exchanges important ideas. I want to live in a world that is also not afraid to criticize ideas.
If we can’t have intelligent conversations about our deepest held beliefs then the problem is with our own personal insecurities and prejudices. It isn’t with freely exchanging our beliefs, testing them, critiquing them, and being willing to abandon wrong ideas if need be. To all of my religious friends, just know that I am actually fighting for your right to believe and practice the things that you desire. I ask for you to return the favor in my case as well. Take care!